Toronto – The province of Ontario is permanently shutting down two more dirty coal-fired units at the Nanticoke Generating Station, reducing the total remaining operating units to four from eight. As of December 31, 2011, Ontario will have shut down 10 of 19 coal units and cut the use of coal by nearly 90% since 2003.
By the end of 2014, Ontario will be the first jurisdiction in the world to replace dirty coal-fired generation with more sustainable alternatives such as wind, solar and bioenergy – the equivalent of taking seven million cars off the road. It is the single largest climate change initiative being undertaken in North America and will lead to savings of $4.4 billion a year in health care, environmental and financial costs, according to the provincial government.
According to a 2008 study from the Canadian Medical Association, Ontario’s economic cost related to air pollution, in terms of lost productivity, healthcare costs, quality of life and loss of life, is almost $4 billion.
More than 30 companies have invested in Ontario’s clean-energy economy including, manufacturers of solar and wind energy components, companies generating energy, and specialist engineering and service firms.